Participatory Spirituality for the 21st Century
Six grammatical categories that underpin philosophical approaches: pronouns, nouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs and prepositions – are understood individually and then woven into a quasi-holographic, integrally philosphemetic formulation of metaphysical pluralism, enacting the principle of non-exclusion.
Some questions and comments that come up for me both for personal clarification from you Bruce and potentially useful for the discussion forum:
While the role of Integral calculus in dispelling the ‘myth of the given’ is commendable, does IT manage to avoid the epistemic fallacy which occurs wherever 'being' is reduced to our 'access to being.'? Students of Bhaskar may throw some light please. This was a stated objective of ITC 2013, was n't it? I wonder if any other paper covers this.
Is OOO, by virtue of its centrality of the object, positing that even heaps and artefacts have all four quadrant dimensions of being (proto-consciousness etc)?
Adjectival philosophy treating quality as primary – here does a distinction need to be made between inanimate objects such as the 'warm, yellow sun', and a sentient person (3p) with essence (A.H. Almaas) that is both unqualifiable and a verb-noun? I think that distinction is made later with reference to Cittamatra and bundle theories?
Also the attributed nature of quality is necessarily linked to state (or the temporary mediating endo-structure) of the ‘attributor’ at the time of attribution?
The differences in the emphasis on the person vis-à-vis the situation between the English and the Japanese could be a good indicator of the individualist/ collectivist tenor of the culture? (Hofstede’s IDV dimension, and perhaps even MAS and PDI)
If we subscribe to the ‘illusion of free will’ theory, then in some sense, all processes are ultimately non-owned processes in an individual level, but perhaps co-owned at an supra-individual level (dominant monad of a socio-cultural holon, which essentially self-organizes without an agentic central controller)? This also seems consistent with Being singular pluralism and centrality of the ‘with’ in co-essentiality.
Big question: can the embodied and enactive role of grammar in being ontologically resonant and potentially revelatory, move the needle a bit on what is mystically referred to as the ‘ineffability problem’? Matters that need deeper study – perhaps while dwelling on other papers, include Whiteheadian concrescence, Bonnitta Roy’s processual model, Latour, and the effectiveness of Rescher’s process semantics and Bohm’s Rheomode in helping us create a new language to shift our narrative?
I have to say that personally for me, just dwelling on the adjective-noun-verb inter-linkage in silence offered a fabulous meditation experience in which all three parts of speech blended into a phenomenological experience enormously rich, multi-dimensional and ineffable beyond the grammatical categories themselves. Perhaps with some more state-and-stage training, the simultaneous contemplation of all six will take 'the bottom out from under the bucket'!
Thank you Bruce for this gift.
Well I am glad there are heretics, rabblerousers, neologists, and other creative forces LIKE YOU GUYS in academia, LOL!
Not critical mass there yet, but maybe it's building, with you-all as seed crystals!
I came upon this power point on Langacker's cognitive grammar. A couple of snips:
"The standard doctrine that basic grammatical classes (parts of speech) are not semantically definable rests on erroneous assumptions about the nature of linguistic meaning. With a proper view of meaning, basic categories--notably noun and verb--have plausible conceptual characterizations at both the prototype level (for typical examples) and the schema level (valid for all instances)" (9).
"The schemas are independent of any particular conceptual content, residing instead in basic cognitive abilities immanent in the archetypes" (10).
"For nouns, the domain of instantiation varies, although space is prototypical; for verbs the relevant domain is always time" (12).
Just have to read any Thesaurus, it's all solved and plain as day there. teeeheeee. NOT.
Good thing Aristotle only thought about predicates, as I recall......
Wonderful find, theurj!
Also recall this post on the underlying environmental drivers for human development, and how focusing on top-down meta-theory is vacuous to the degree it isn't so grounded. See the IW article referenced.
Of note here is how given auspiscious environmental factors Europe colonized the rest of the world and not vice-versa. And with it indoctrinated the Indo-European language assumptions, one of which is the very notion of a 'modern' metaphysical abstraction not dependent on environmental factors. Even and especially integral metatheory in terms of human development! Irony indeed.
I align that environmental factors are grossly under-appreciated, and under-investigated (which is cause there and which effect, it probably goes both ways) by many folks in the world. I am reminded about Riane Eisler's investigations into humanity's earliest (pre?)history re the roots of violence and patriarchy, and her attribution of the latter partly to humans living in cold environments which diminished the amount babies got touched, thus by a chain of childhood developmental factors, making them less empathetic and thus more prone to violence. That perspective -- which I read in Sacred Pleasure: Sex, Myths, and the Politics of the Body really changed my own perspectives on human psychology and human "nature" (quote unquote) drastically.
"The move initiated here by Sloterdijk is to my mind one of the most important philosophical projects of the twenty-first century — to place the earth as the condition of possibility for all philosophy, and indeed of all living activity of any kind."
Thank you for this Bruce! I don't think it is an exaggeration to say that this is profoundly important.
And thank you theurj for linking to the post that links to the article by Kristian Stålne on peak oil and why integralites tend to overlook it (original here). Note that Kristian Stålne and Svein Horn had a presentation on this subject at the recent Integral Theory Europe conference and won a best paper award. I hope the paper becomes available and that we can discuss it here at some point.
I have been a peak oil activist since 2005, and have also contemplated it's lack of attention in integral circles, and come to similar conclusions. For example here where I wrote:
"The important thing to note here is that when we keep in mind that the Techno-Economic base is fully dependent upon the Ecological/Energetic base – again, that available energy determines what is possible – that provides a solid foundation for the Integral framework. Without this acknowledgement, we can get lost in a world of technological fantasy and ideas about infinite growth. If we root ourselves in what the ecological base can support in the LR quadrant, we will rest on a realistic foundation."
And to bring it back to the topic related to language/communication, Tim Winton has recently posted a new introduction to PatternDynamics. He says:
“Every social transformation is accompanied by a new way of communicating. This includes the hardware of communication, like the printing press or the Internet, but it must also include the software–the new languages that emerge to disclose new worlds. The current planetary transformation is a transformation to a living systems worldview, and it is this world that our languages must now describe.”
"In researching the basis of how PatternDynamics™ works, I’ve come to understand that its effects are based on the power of language. The power of language is that it enacts our world. Until we have a symbol that represents an aspect of reality, that aspect of reality cannot be communicated, and if it cannot be communicated then it will not, in any useful way, exist within that community, nor will it exist as a feature of its world-view, nor can it be a relevant part of the kind of world that community creates.
PatternDynamics™ is a language that communicates the reality of the patterns of holistic interconnectedness that enact a living systems view of the world."
So...yes, we need to "place the earth [I would stipulate energy and ecology] as the condition of possibility for all philosophy," and we need a language update to communicate this reality. I'm hoping PatternDynamics (discussion of Tim's ITC paper here) can fill this role, or at least be a stepping stone (in addition to Bruce's work here, and the others mentioned, such as Sloterdijk).
Wow, David. Beautiful. I ring like a bell in resonance with your view and the quotes from Tim !!!
IMO Tim's ITC paper in 2013 wasn't particularly about PatternDynamics, but a lot is available on his website. And perhaps I'll just take this opportunity to plug the ILRev. Notes from the Field reports on his training workshops, by David and myself and others in 2013 and myself and others in 2014. FWIW.
"Becoming Intermezzo: Eco-Theopoetics after the Anthropic Turn," by Roland Faber.
I'm reviewing the linked article above as an exemplar of prepositional theology. I've copied some excerpts below which I think help to demonstrate this -- and which, I believe, presents an All-Quadrant sensibility in its prespositional (rather than pronounal) register.
"Eco-nature in us, bursting us inside out, and eco-nature between us, imploding the chaosmic All within us—this is the unconquerable wildness, the necessity of which makes us its happenings, disowned of our “necessities” of possession. This consummation of humanity in the dispossession within eco-nature is for Bataille, after the ecological death of God, the mystical move of becoming-animal, becoming multiplicity. This unio mystica, however, if it is not the unification with the omnipotent God that has to have died first in this eco-chaosmic death of substantialism, is also not a new indifference of the Oneness of humanity and nature but the consummation of all unity into the realm of multiplicity that, as Luce Irigaray puts it, is divine precisely by not being One. It is the khoric realm of a paradox where we have to go through divergences, bifurcations, and antinomies all at once; in which we become empty and the All at the same time by being, as Deleuze puts it, One-All with multiplicity, infinitely moving through ever new multiplicities of mutual immanence and limitation, planes of immanence and consistency in constant refigurations within an infinite chaosmos of transformation.
This is the realm of poetics, of the rupture of the continuity of unification where, as for Kristeva, meaning is indirected. This is the poetics of the unprecedented in which, as Whitehead puts it, “philosophy is mystical. For mysticism is direct insight into depths as yet unspoken” (MT 174). Where the Romanticism of Bataille’s Poetic Fallacy is avoided by recognizing the monstrosity of becoming; in which everything, as Deleuze says, reappears “like a single and unique ‘total’ moment, simultaneously the moment of evanescence and production of difference, of disappearance and appearance,” “the moment at which difference both vanishes and is produced” (DR 42). In this mystical in/difference, everything is only in difference. Its poetics cannot differentiate God as cosmological function anymore. God and the world become “one” in being not differentiated by any property that would be reserved to God. As Whitehead says, in this in/difference
It is as true to say that God is permanent and the World fluent, as that the World is permanent and God is fluent. It is as true to say that God is one and the World many, as that the World is one and God many. … It is as true to say that God creates the World, as that the World creates God. (PR 348)
If, however, in this khoric ream God and the world are in/different as in the mystics, that is, if their difference cannot be crafted around any difference of property, why then not say that God is the world? To be sure, many philosophers would follow such a line of thought -— pantheism as last resort of divine apophasis in the world. Deleuze became a Spinozist and many theologians today feel themselves to be ecstatic naturalists or mystical nihilists. But if, for many, eco-nature leaves a mystery of luminescent darkness -— as for Nicolas of Cusa -— that cannot be reduced to unity, we need still to differentiate between enfolding (complicatio), which Cusa named “God,” and unfolding (explicatio), which Cusa named the infinite “world” of multiplicity. We will be speaking of the multiplicities of God and the world in their mutual immanence, limitation, resonance, incompleteness, and determination. We will, with Whitehead, avoid the “identification” of God and world over against another not by naming reserved properties but instead will name God and the world as multiplicities in mutual in/difference, that is, only as mutual embodiment or, as Catherine Keller says, in mutual inter-carnation of multiplicities. This divine (in) multiplicity will insist on multiplicity and only “ex-sist” by “in-sisting” in multiplicity."
",,,,,,Eco-consciousness and eco-conscience have an ethical and a spiritual dimension. Both can be characterized as “always beginning in the middle.” Deleuze formulates this new categoreal imperative of eco-ethics as letting “your loves be like the wasp and the orchid” and, without beginning and end, as being “always in the middle, between things, interbeing, intermezzo” (Deleuze/Guattari, Rhizome 17). To begin in the middle always means to follow multiplicities in their deconstructive complexity within and without, to unsettle the boundaries and clear borders of forced identities, which are always imposed measures of the One with its power-installed abstractions of unification and division. To begin in the middle is an ethical category that activates us from the middle of the happening of multiplicities and asks us to always submerge into their middle, the many folds of connectivity within and beyond, which always form under the skin of powers of unification and division and only come to life within, across and beyond the boundaries of power. To become inter-being, we need to leave the high states of unity to become actors of the folds within unties between their moments of unifications, and between unities in the middle of their artificial isolation. To become “in between” means to become intermezzo, that is, less than the abstract unifications that always feed the Anthropic Imperialism over nature, culture, and (human) Self. It means to become minor.
To become minor does not mean to reduce to lower unities; it does not mean to atomize reality. It rather means to become uncountable in terms of units, to become intermezzo within and between all abstractions like Self, Culture, Nature, to undercut “identity” with diverging dimensionality—like a river, a rhizome, a life. It is this access to becoming within and between culture, nature, and us in which we lose the Anthropic substantialism and, at the same time, become “events between” and a multiplicity of such events. However, in becoming a minority we become “universal” in a new sense: by becoming ecologically connected beyond any structural integrity. We become subversively distributed among all unifications. For Whitehead, this is the eco-ethical imperative of becoming multiplicities: In the “self-correction by consciousness of its own initial excess of subjectivity“ it is the task of eco-philosophy (organic philosophy) to deconstruct subjectivity’s “selective character” in which “the individual obscures the external totality from which it originates and which it embodies” in order “to recover the totality obscured by the selection” (PR 15).
For a post-anthropic eco-ethics, this impulse of becoming minor implies a redirection of ecological action: With Deleuze, we have to become “molecular” not “molar” -— not seeking higher or lower unifications. Hence, an eco-ethical imperative cannot be built on slogans such as the “preservation” of states—since their presupposed unity and identity is a mere abstraction from their becoming; or the “reparation” of an ecological equilibrium— because it is an abstraction of a certain state of nature as ideal (especially for human survival); or “eco-justice”—because it presupposes fixed identities with legal responsibilities; not even “sustainability”—insofar as it might already presuppose sustainance like substances. Instead, post-anthropic eco-ethics will direct us toward the compassionate life with the multiplicities within and between."
I've referenced the above piece in this post and following, as well as Faber generally in various other threads. I like how Keller describes it as a "differential nondualism."
Yes, I referenced this essay awhile back on other threads as well; I just wanted to "log" it here, as part of my note-collating for my recent exploration of different grammatical theologies.